Saturday, August 18, 2012

FolkFest ~*~Final Day~*~

FolkFest this year had 16 pavilions.  They are located at different parts of the city.  None of the pavilions were on the North or West parts of Saskatoon.  Today there were some road closures for road repairs making it difficult on festival goers.  We decided to go to the eastern part of the city where three pavilions were being held because traffic didn't seem to be an issue in those parts.

We headed to the soccer centre.  It is large enough to hold maybe 3 pavilions but this year they were calling it the Global Village.  Inside the one auditorium were Laos and Oromo.  There were several booths selling wares.  I was really attracted to the bone jewellery.  It was only $5 for a bone bracelet.  I also really liked a small heart shaped bowl made in Kenya that was inexpensive as well.  But I left both behind.  Sometimes I am overwhelmed with choices and just decide on nothing!  The Laos dancing reminded me of a Hawaaian dance.  It was very fluid with hand gestures.  The dancing at Oromo reminded me more of Indian dancing with a lot of stamping of feet and hopping.

Oromo Coffee Ceremony Display
We did not eat from the offerings of these two pavilions but it really smelled delicious.  Oromo is very well known for it's coffee and had a coffee ceremony hut.  They were not showing the ceremony while we were there but the placement of the utensils and seating reminded me of the Chinese Tea Ceremony which we saw two years ago at the Asia-Pacific Pavilion.  I do wish we could have seen the Coffee Ceremony as we do enjoy our coffee!

Not far away, just a hot jaunt through the parking lot and down the street, was the Norwegian pavilion.  I mention the heat because today it was 30*C if not warmer.  The Norwegian pavilion inside and out of St. Joseph's school was very hot.  We always enjoy this display because Hubby's heritage is Norwegian and Swedish.  They had several booths set up selling items.  I marveled at the Hardanger which is a form of needlepoint and cutwork.  I've made small items myself but it is very tricky when cutting away the cloth after you've toiled at the needlework!  We laughed at the t-shirts which read "Does this shirt make me look Norwegian?" 

We saw several Trolls and like the fairy tales they are homely little creatures!  You could stand with a backdrop and have your picture taken with some of the Trolls too!

Outside the back of the school there were real live Vikings!  When we saw them they were resting in their tent.  However, they are a rowdy bunch and tend to get into fights.  We overheard some excited children talking about it.  I noticed the children were wearing home made tee shirts that read Around the World Birthday Party and thought what a wonderful idea!!

Hubby and I stood in the food line which was probably the best organized of all the food stops.  I had a meatball plate which came with Swedish meatballs in a mushroom dill gravy, beet salad and lefse.  Lefse is a tortilla like flatbread made with potatoes instead of flour.  Hubby had.....guess?  HA!  Herring on toast!  As well as, smoked salmon with cream cheese on bread and a single roll of lefse with butter and sugar.  Remembering the sign behind the counter, "Why take chances, eat dessert", I opted for an almond tart. 
Scandinavian Fudge
There was a fudge counter and it was fun to read the names of the fudge.  Olie cookies & cream.  Fjord rocky road.  Hannah butterscotch.  I snapped a picture and the lady mused that there were less calories my way.  *grin*

Lady making Krumkake in a waffle iron.
We also treated ourselves to Krumkake.  Krumkake, in my opinion, is the Scandinavian answer to Italian Cannoli.  It is a batter which is cooked in a special Krumkake iron....like a waffle iron, and then molded around a cone.  In Hubby's family, the Krumkake is filled with a cream and sometimes has candies or sprinkles on top.  It is delish!  The ladies making it were having a hard time to keep up with the supply at $1 each, but sadly they were not filling them with anything.  They sure were yummy though and the smell wafted through the whole pavilion.

We decided that was it for our round the world tour.  We didn't go to the Bangladesh, Brazilian, German, India, Irish or Ukrainian pavilions.  We have done some of them in previous years.  The Ukrainian and German are always good but always packed full.  I think the most memorable and fun was the Indian/Métis pavilion and I would definitely take that one in again.  It was great fun and for the price of a passport $15 we indeed took in world class entertainment.

Friday, August 17, 2012

FolkFest 2012 ~*~Day Two~*~

What another incredible day!  We started at the Asia-Pacific pavilion.  We arrived right on time for the first performance of the day.  This featured Amazing Lion, Folk Dance, Yoyo, and Martial Arts according to the program.  The Amazing Lion was similar to the dragon dances that I've seen before except this time there were three lions and they seemed to be tamed by the 2 little girl dancers.  There were several folk dances from different regions.  The Yogo demonstration was very interesting.  It's unlike a regular yoyo.  Instead, you hold two sticks joined by a string and you balance what is similar to a spinning top.  If that wasn't enough, they go through different moves to make the top jump or spin and at one time they even juggled it!

The Amazing Lion.  Note the large head in front of me...murphy's law.
The most impressive part of the Asia-Pacific pavilion was the Kung-foo fighters!  It was listed as Martial Arts but was so much more.  Think Jackie Chan or Bruce Lee!  They wore colourful satin costumes.  The ages seemed to range from about 7 to late teens.  What I loved most was the way it was choreographed the girl and the smallest boy won the fight!  I wish I was able to take a photo but the movements changed so quickly it would just be a blur.

We left the Asia-Pacific to take in the South American-Mexican pavilion.  This venue is small.  It took place in a church in a busy part of the city with tough parking.  We parked a block away at a grocery store and walked.  Inside the pavilion it was crowded and hot....and I mean HOT.  It was very difficult to find seating but did at a table.  We were able to watch a singer and two dances and then the tour with the mayor arrived.

The unthinkable happened.

A woman came to our table and told the entire table that we had to leave because they needed the seats for the tour and so people could eat.

We were basically kicked out.

South American-Mexican pavilion you totally failed us.  FAILED!

We decided to take in the Indian-Métis pavilion.  Outside the Indian-Métis Friendship Centre [the venue] was a giant tipi was on display.  We were greeted by two girls in a traditional dress.  They extended their hands in welcome.  

We decided to eat since it was passed our meal time.  Their mealtime offerings were extensive.  Hubby decided on a buffalo burger with the works, but I wanted to try something more ethnic so got a combo plate that included dried fish, wild rice and bannock.  The best thing happened.  While I claimed a seat and waited for Hubby to bring our food a man approached me and asked if he and his wife could sit with us since there was room.  I said of course they could.  The man's name was Henry Gardipy and was a performer at the pavilion!!!  He and his wife tour to multicultural events and casino's all over Canada.  Henry said that he and his wife sing but their son learned to dance instead and now that he's grown he tours as well.  They were such a nice couple and had a great sense of humour and it was easy to talk with them.

Hoop Dancers.  I saw such pride on their faces.
We excused ourselves to watch the entertainment.  When we first entered the auditorium the hoop dance was going on.  It appears that in order to be a hoop dancer you need to be able to hold several hoops at once entwined around your body in several constantly morphing poses.  We were treated to the talents of Dallas Fiddler-Boyer and Phil Boyer who played the fiddle and guitar.  The fiddle player kept time with interesting foot movements.  I think if he were standing he'd be jigging all over the stage.  We heard Krystal Pederson sing and perform an amazing rendition of Ava Maria.  

The most incredible part was what happened next.  There were dances performed by women and the stories were so interesting of how the dances came to be.  I love the humour too!  But then a man came to the circle who was wearing a very impressive headress of feathers as well as feathers around his waist and bottom.  He danced with a stern look on his face.  I couldn't help but smile the whole time.  I loved it.

But then......

It was time for the round dance and they wanted people out of the audience to help out.  Hubby looked mortified.  The feathered man pulled me out to participate and before you know it Hubby was standing at the circle too!  Then the drum started and we all held hands and danced in a circle.

They said that in tradition a round dance could last until all hours of the night.  I'm glad the song only lasted a few minutes!

It was amazing.  If you ever have the chance to participate in something like a round dance.  Do it!  DO IT! 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

FolkFest 2012 ~*~Day One~*~

Every year the city of Saskatoon holds a three day event called FolkFest.  FolkFest is a multicultural celebration through a series of pavilions dedicated to different countries and nationalities.  Every year there are additions and subtractions.

We purchased our passports ahead of time at the Safeway.  Notice I said passport?  It's a little book just like your very own government issued passport minus the gruesome photo.  This little book has a page for each pavilion which gets a unique stamp once visited, just like your real passport.
The Saskatoon Pipe Band
We decided since there are five pavilions located at the same location, Prairieland Exhibition, that it would be a great start to the festivities.  A couple years ago we really enjoyed ourselves at the Scottish Pavilion.  It was great once again.  There were tables with people selling Scottish goods - everything from sweets to kilts.  We took in the main stage and saw the Saskatoon Pipe Band playing bagpipes, which are very impressive in person.  There was a pub and cafe offering haggis, shepherds pie and shortbread among other things.  I've tried haggis and actually liked it.  Hubby says that's because my grandfather was Scottish. *shrugs*  I did buy toffee on our way out.  It was excellent stick-you-teeth-together yummy-ness.
Scottish Toffee

Next we went to the Philipinnes!  Other years we've entered this pavilion with unfortunate timing.....just when the entertainment was ending.  This time we waited around and took in some of the dancing and singing.  I love the filipino clothes.  They are colourful and often sparkly.  We looked at the handmade jewelry and I was tempted by the seller to purchase a sparkly beaded bracelet.....but I didn't.  At this pavilion we decided to eat.  We shared a "combo #2" plate with an extra pork bbq skewer for $13.50.  Included was Sinangag [fried rice], Pansit Bihon [noodles], Adobo chicken & Inihaw [the bbq'd pork skewers].  The one plate was plenty to serve the two of us.  If you wanted dessert they offered avocado ice cream which sounded interesting.
Apologies for the blurry pic, but these people were dancing quickly!
Then we cruised on to the Carribean.  You could smell the jerk chicken and they were encouraging people to walk up to the Tiki Hut.  On stage was a flame eater!  I've seen this man on stage before.  He wields two sticks which are on fire and goes through several positions or dance moves and eventually eats the fire at the end of them.  It's incredible.

People have not believed me before when I've run into certain characters [There's a Batman story for another time]......so when we saw Captain Jack Sparrow hanging out I knew I needed proof!

Myself and Captain Jack Sparrow

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Saskatoon Adventures

Butterhorns - Traeger's Bakery Miller Avenue Saskatoon
On Tuesday, Hubby [who has taken the week off work] and I stopped in at our favourite butcher shop, Prairie Meats, to buy something for supper.  I wandered next door into Traeger's Bakery.  They had Butterhorns.  I purchased 2 for dessert.  I have no idea what we bought for supper.  Anyhow, I have been looking high and low in this city for a bakery that has cannoli.  Apparently, there aren't any Italian people in this city to make it.  *shrugs*  It turns out Traeger's used to make and sell cannoli.  They'd order the shells and then fill them in store.  Well the shells started arriving all broken so they said "enough of that." and started making them out of pastry dough instead.  The verdict?  They were really yummy.....but not cannoli.

Yesterday, we ventured all the way over to the south side and into Homesense.  I purchased a new kitchen clock.  The previous clock has become gummed up with grease and after trying to clean it.....and sticking to it.....and trying to make it pass off as clean I gave up.  The hands are a knife and fork and the pendulum is a spoon!  I <3 it. 

Last week, I did surgery on the lazy susan cabinet.  Rather, I performed an amputation by totally removing the lazy susan.  She was so lazy she collapsed from the weight of holding up "stuff" and I suppose if my job since 1974 was to hold stuff up I'd probably drop from exhaustion too.  So, today Hubby and I visited some kitchen cabinet stores....Superior Cabinets, Kitchen Craft, & Tait.  The best service by far was at Superior while we found the right wood style for us at Tait BUT after scanning through the Superior pamphlets they too had that same wood.  It's actually a laminate or vaneer called Zebrano.  The one we liked had a grey stain to it.  I can picture the lower cabinets in this while the upper cabinets can be white.  We even found a great countertop to go with our ideas.  

We are sort of dreaming here.  I don't necessarily think we can afford to do kitchen reno's right away.  We have other pressing expenses such as replacing the aluminum sliding windows...also circa 1974.  But it was fun to see what was available and find all kinds of drawer inserts and cabinet options.

This evening we took a drive to the University of Saskatchewan.  We like a trail that starts near where former Prime Minister Diefenbaker and his wife are laid to rest.  In fact, it's right behind the Diefenbaker Centre.  We took Brandy~puppy along for the ride.  She was super excited and barked a lot at people jogging and walking and such.
Brandy on the look-out for joggers.
Our city is so pretty.  My photo's don't really do it justice.  Saskatoon is built around the South Saskatchewan River and from this vantage point you can see all of the downtown skyline.  I can't imagine living anywhere else.


Up!  UP! ....and Away!!   


Chapter Six [It's a Novel Idea]

Why is it that time speeds by when you want it to go really slow?

Emily had come to my apartment after work to help me pick out an outfit.....at her insistence. I didn't want to wear anything too encouraging. Of course Emily couldn't understand that. She was clearly smitten with Alex. I wondered if he knew she felt this way.

After debating about what I should wear Emily finally agreed that my dark indigo jeans were the best way to go and she picked out a low cut sleeveless top which I had bought in a moment of weakness and never worn. She said the plum color looked nice with my skin tone. I would have rather worn something that covered me a lot more. Emily had rolled her eyes.

Emily had tried to show me a new hairstyle too. Finally she gave up dissing my curly mop. “You should straighten it” She had said. That was a lot of work and why should I do that when people paid good money to have curly hair?

I finally shooed Emily from my apartment. I walked to the hall mirror and assessed my appearance. I tugged on the shirt. It was tighter than I would have liked. I tried to shuffle it around to make it fit better. I huffed and pouted at my image in the mirror. If only I ate more salads and traded the designer coffee's for water.

Who was I kidding? Coffee coursed through my veins.

I glanced at the clock. Wasn't he supposed to be here by now? I sat trying to be patient. Patience was not one of my best traits. I checked my watch. It showed the same time as the clock on the wall. I was being neurotic. Just because I was incredibly punctual didn't mean other people shared the same obsession.

There was a knock at the door. I could still fake an illness, my mind thought quickly, but I fought off the urge. Who knows maybe I will have a good time. Maybe Alex is exactly what I needed.

I answered the door and I took an appraising look at Alex. He wore jeans as well so I was happy that I had fought for that choice. He looked much like he did at work everyday except toned down. He grinned at me. “Hello Stacey.” he paused in the doorway looking me up and down. “Are you ready to go?”

I wasn't liking how he was looking at me. I felt uncomfortable already. “As ready as I'll every be!” I grabbed my jacket and bag off the counter. Alex insisted on driving as most guys would. I was just so used to feeling independent. I made sure I had my keys and locked the door behind me. We rode the elevator down in silence. Thank goodness it was a short ride. I hated elevators as it was. Ever since I was a little kid they'd make my stomach feel upset and I was feeling topsy turvy enough as it was without any extra help! When we exited the building Alex walked in front of me and I expected him to hold the fire door open for me, but instead he kept right on walking.....letting the door nearly hit me.

“Hey!” But Alex was already charging ahead and was unlocking his car door. It was a Mustang. Figures, I thought, it fit with my impression of him. I stood waiting on the passenger side as he leaned across and unlocked my side.

Once I was buckled up, I asked “Where are we going to go?”

Alex looked over. “Where do you feel like going?”

“Well, I've never been to the Broadway Roastery.” It always mystified me that it was called Broadway but was located on 8th street rather than Broadway.

“The Roastery it is.” He said, putting his car in drive and pealing away from my west side home.

For the most part we rode in silence.

“Can I turn your radio on?” I asked reaching for the dial.

“I prefer to to not listen to music.” He said putting his hand over the radio dial to prevent me from doing anything.

I was shocked. “You don't like music?” I'd never met anyone who didn't. It didn't seem natural. I mean, this was usually the type of car you'd see cruising the streets with music pumping out all the windows.

“Not really.”

“Oh.” Music was such a big part of who I was. I sat back in my seat and watching the scenery go by the window. There were couples walking holding hands.....people walking their dogs.....it was spring and people were taking advantage of it.

Finally, when the silence was deafening we pulled into the parking lot. We walked into the establishment and the wonderful mixture of coffee and baking tickled my nostrils. Heaven. We stood at the counter and ordered our drinks. There was a showcase of pastries and I also ordered what looked to be a lovely danish. The cashier totaled up the order. I looked expectantly at Alex. He looked expectantly at me.

“Do you mind if we go dutch?” He asked.

Cheapskate. Yes I minded. I dug out my wallet and handed my portion over to the cashier. She smirked.

Alex grabbed his coffee from the counter when it was ready and without a word found a table and seated himself. I was left to wait alone for my own. I guess chivalry was dead. I took my tray and walked over to the table. I pulled out my chair and sat down setting my tray and bag on the table. I took the lid off my coffee to let it cool and picked up my danish. I took a slow bite and savored it. I set the danish down and then I spoke. “What would you like to talk about?” Music was out, obviously. “Tell me about yourself.”

“There's not much to tell really.”

Uh-huh. “Well, amuse me.”

“I grew up here in toon town.” He sipped his hot coffee. Alex had not bought a danish. “My parents are both teachers. I don't have any siblings.”

“What do you do when you're not working.”

“This and that.”

This was like pulling teeth. Some ladies man!

“Do you like football?” I hadn't met many people who weren't Rider fans. “I can't wait for the new season to start.”

“I'm not really into competitive sports.”

I polished off my danish and licked the frosting from my fingers. I needed a napkin. I looked around the restaurant to see if there was a dispenser somewhere. There was someone at the counter. Alex was not going to volunteer to get me one either. That much was clear.

He leaned towards me. “Let's say we blow this Popsicle stand and go somewhere more comfortable?”

“What?”

“Oh come on Stacey, there's no reason to beat around the bush. We both know what we want from each other. I'm not stupid. You've been into me since you first started working at the bank.” He reached out to touch my hand, but I recoiled.

My mouth was gaping open. “What would give you the impression that I would want to do anything with you?” I grabbed my coffee and started to push my chair back but he was quicker than I was. Alex jumped up and in the process knocked the hot coffee over and onto me spilling it down my new blouse. I yelped as the steaming hot liquid seeped down to my skin.

“Be quiet! You're making a scene.”

“I'm making a scene? I'll show you a scene.” I yelled. “The least you could do is show me a little respect!” The volume of my voice was increasing. I was becoming a little hysterical. Someone gently touched my shoulder as I reared back in surprised.

“Hi Stacey.” He grinned while his brilliant blue eyes twinkled. “What's going on here? You didn't trick this poor guy into buying you a coffee like you did me, did you?”

“We are on a date.” Alex snapped.

“Is that what you call this?” I stood up. I grabbed His arm and began walking way briskly.

“Wait!” Alex shouted. I stopped abruptly. Alex reaching my side. “Don't tell anyone about this, okay?” He whispered.

“Sure, sure, whatever.” I said. I would say anything to escape. I made my way to the restroom where I abruptly stopped realizing I still had His arm in a death grip. “I.....I need to clean up.” I stammered tugging at my tight shirt that was now ruined.

“C'mon.” He said, taking my hand and plunging through the ladies room door. “I'll help you clean up.....if you'll let me.”

Inside the restroom, I looked at my reflection in the mirror. My eyes were starting to well up. I was a wreck.

“What was that all about?” He asked.

“Ugh!” I threw my arms up. “A huge mistake!” And then the tears really started to flow. So much for being a strong independent woman.

“Don't....don't do that.” He said gently brushing my cheek. “That guy out there is the bigger fool. Don't let it get to you.” He took my bag from me and plopped it on the restroom vanity. “I seem to remember a top in here.” I almost smiled at the remembrance of bumping into him that first morning. He fished it out and dangled it in front of me.

I took the tank top from him and went into a stall. I was still sniffling, but he was right. “I need to know something.” I shouted to Him.

“What's that?”

“I need to know the name of the guy who saved me.....” I opened the restroom stall door. “I told you my name, but I don't know yours.”

He looked guarded. He bit his lower lip. “Um.....Reese.”

Like a reeses peanut butter cup. He was yummy to look at all right. Eye candy.

“Well I owe you a debt of gratitude, Reese, for helping me out of that.....that.....whatever that was.”
I shook my head disbelieving, making my curls tumble.

He reached over and tucked my hair behind my ear. I thought I'd died. The electricity in his finger tips as they briefly touched my skin shocked me. Reese chuckled. “How about I take you home?” I liked that plan. “Where are you parked?”

“I didn't drive here.” I told him. “I didn't bring my car.”

He didn't either. “Oh. Well then we do have a predicament.”

I dug around in my monstrosity of a purse. “I think I have some bus tickets in here somewhere.” After taking out several items and getting Reese to hold them I came up with two little rectangles. “Victory!” I smiled. I held my bag open for him to drop my belongings back into. I stuffed my coffee stained top inside as well.

“Its a wonder you can find anything in there.”

“I know, but when a girl has a small purse its never big enough.” I put the strap over my shoulder. “I kind of thrive on my disorganization.”

“I find myself wanting to know so much more about you.” Reese looked into my eyes.

When we left the restaurant Alex was gone. We walked to the closest bus shelter which was a few blocks away. It would take us downtown and then I'd get a transfer to get me home. As we walked people would glance up, some would look surprised while some would stop and stare. What was with people? Hadn't they seen a good looking man before? It was probably that my eyes were all red from the crying episode in the restroom. Yeah. That had to be it.

We sat in the bus shelter and waited. I hadn't had the presence of mind to see what he was wearing before but now that I really looked at him he made my heart flutter. He was wearing a grey t-shirt with a blue shirt over top. His jacket was a wine color leather jacket. Very nice, I thought. I was so plain in comparison. He had a hole in his jeans on the left knee. Trendy.

When the bus approached he took my hand. My heart skipped a beat. We walked to the very back of the bus and sat down. He let me have the window seat. “So....” he started. People were turning in their seats and looking. I didn't care anymore.

“So.” I replied. Reese smiled a lopsided smile. I didn't really feel the need to talk. I felt so comfortable with him.

“Besides working in a bank and drinking americano coffee I don't know anything about you.”

“What would you like to know.” He was still holding my hand and I was so happy that he was.

“Everything.”

So I told Reese about growing up north of the city in a much rougher town. That I was the youngest of three siblings who were much older than myself. That I didn't speak to my parents much. They were retired and traveled a lot. I rambled on and on and he just nodded and took in all the information. He looked me in the eyes with interest like no other man had ever looked at me before. He listened. He nodded in agreement with me. He shook his head in amazement. He cared.

Before I knew it we were at the bus mall downtown.

“You don't have to go all the way home with me.” I stated.

“I would feel best if I did.” We were out on the street now. We had gotten transfers. “You shouldn't be out by yourself late at night.”

I didn't want to argue with him. I did want to spend more time with him. We found our transfer and saw that this bus was almost empty as we had a wide variety of seats. There were only a couple of other people getting on this bus. I looked at my watch which was on my left arm, my fingers were still entwined with Reeses. It was almost 10.

“It's my turn to ask you questions.” I said now. “What's your favorite color?”

“Green.....no, maybe orange. No I think it's actually green.” Reese answered. “I like yellow too. What's yours

“Blue.” I said. “What did you eat for lunch today?”

“That's an unusual question.” And I was an unusual person. He smiled. “I had a tuna sandwich.” I frowned. “Something wrong with tuna?”

“I don't like tuna.”

He let go of my hand and crossed his arms in front of him. “Well then I guess we can't be together. I eat tuna almost every day.” He saw the disappointment on my face and then I realized he was joking and I smiled again. Instead of taking my hand again he put his arm around my shoulders.

Heart – beat – skip – ping.

I tried to continue. We would be at the bus stop a block from home soon. “If you could be any animal what kind of animal would you be?”

“Seriously?”

“Yup.” I answered, waiting.

“I would say.....if I could be any animal.....I'd probably be a wolf.”

My wolf man. Really? My? I felt so possessive.

“Hmmm.”

“You don't like wolves either?”

“No its not that.” I replied. “I'm trying to figure out what that means.”

“What animal would you be?”

“A bear.” I thought. “Yup, definitely a bear. I've always like Winnie the Pooh and I do like honey.”

“Tut tut looks like rain.”

I was confused. “What?”

Reese pointed to out the bus window where rain drops were gently splashing against it. The bus was pulling up to the stop now. We weren't that far from my apartment. I grabbed his hand and began to run but the rain was coming down harder. By the time we reached the building my hair was damp and my face was dewy. Reese insisted on walking me right to my door. I led him through the security doors and stopped in front of my door, marked 13. I leaned with my back against the door and rummaged in my bag for my keys. When I looked up he was leaning into me with one arm against the wall.

“I'm going to come here tomorrow and take you out on a proper date.” Reese confessed.

I melted under his gaze. “And when should I expect you?”

He laughed. “When you least expect.” He said it like it was a joke. A joke I didn't quite get. Reese took my key, unlocked the door and opened it slightly, then handed me the key back. I was still looking at him. It was crazy. I couldn't look away. He took my hand again and just held it between his hands. Then he looked at me with those blue eyes that gave me butterflies on that first day at Starbuck's. He reached over and tucked my soggy hair behind my ear again, smiled and then turned to walk away. “Tomorrow.” He said as he was disappearing down the hall.

In a daze, I entered my apartment. I shut the door and slumped against it falling to a seated position on the floor.

Oh My God.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

10 Thought Tuesday ~ #1 @ Blogger ~

This is my first blog post at Blogger for 10 Thought Tuesday.  It's something I started doing many moons ago and it not only caught on.....but it stuck.  If this is your first time reading it's really just a list of random thoughts that I'm thinking at the time that I scribble down and post.  I hope that you play along.  Maybe even leave me a link in the comments to your 10 thoughts.  That would be cool.

1.  Hubby has taken the week off work.  I love the man, I really really do, but he's making me CRAZY!

2.  I am eating a ham, chicken, roast beef, cheese sandwich with a glass of Dr. Rock.  I really wanted Dr. Pepper but it was $2.69 and Dr. Rock was only 99 cents.  I figure I rock anyway so it's a win-win for me.

3.  Brandy~puppy the Super Dog is trying to get me to feed her my sandwich.  She left her perfectly good bowl of vet "gastro intestinal" food to  mooch off me.  Meh.  Maybe I would too if I had to eat vet food.

4.  It is cool and raining outside today.  It is just another reminder that fall is just around the corner.  I'm hanging on to summer vacation fiercely.....but, I can feel the grasp of the fall routine juuuust over yonder.  I'm not ready!!!  I've got more lounging and reading to do!!!!

5.  Yesterday we went to Indigo Books.  I had $30 of gift cards given to me from piano students.  I bought a novel about a donut shop [surprise surprise], a monogrammed magnetic bookmark, and EOS lip gloss.  Why a book store has EOS hand lotion or lip gloss is beyond me.

6.  Odell Willis is a defensive end for the Saskatchewan Roughriders tweeted that the new Tim Horton's peach mango smoothie is awesome and now he's addicted.  #crack.  So Hubby and I tried one for the first time yesterday.  OMG and holy smokes they are yummy!

7.  I seem to be on a Twitter role.  Last week Shannon Tweed.....yes, THAT one......the one who is married to Gene Simmons responded to my Tweet about seeing KISS garden gnomes at the Canadian Tire.

8.  I'm trying to compose this here list and Hubby keeps bothering me.  Did I mention he's making me nuts?  NUTS, I tell you.  It's only day 2 of his holidays.  *rolls eyes*  In best Titanic voice  "Help!  help!"

9.  Thursday, Friday & Saturday of this week is FolkFest in Saskatoon.  We've bought our Passports and were looking at which pavilions to attend.  This year we are making sure to hit up the Indian/Metis pavilion.  I can't believe I've never taken that one in before.  Highlights usually are the Norwegian and Scottish pavilions.  This year we will be on our own time and don't need to rush around.

10.  At some point later this week I need to stop by the music school and pick up my schedule for fall.  I am required to call and confirm all my piano students.  This is another sure sign the summer is nearly over.


Monday, August 13, 2012

Piano Lesson #6 ~ Review ~

It is review time!  You might be thinking but there's two more lessons after today, but for the teacher....not so much.  We are always scheming.....er, planning ahead and for down the road and next year and such.

You need to go and review all of the basic terminology.  The most important things to know are the treble clef, bass clef, note reading and counting.  

Have you ever had a test before?  Well, it's just a list of questions and you want to answer them correctly.  Nothing will happen if you get the wrong answer except that it tells me that we may need to work more in that area.  It might also give me an indication of what level you can advance to after your 8th lesson.

Because after your 8th lesson you get real books!!!!

Yeah.  Pretty exciting stuff.

Next I want you to pick 2 of your very favourite and best played songs that I've taught you and you can play hands together.  For some reason most students pick Hot Cross Buns and Mary Had a Little Lamb.  *shrugs*

You are going to play those 2 favourite songs for your 8th Lesson Graduation.

*gasp*

Well, no worries.  It's really just a mini concert with maybe 4 people in the room.  But you will get a certificate for doing it!!!!

Okay.  Enough of that stuff.

NEW SONG!!!!!

Years ago this song was in the Milk commercial.  If you are Canadian you might remember the jingle  ♫...Drink milk love life...drink milk love life..♫  But most kids look at me like I have a lobster on my head when I mention that now.  The song is titled "Ode to Joy" and is Beethoven.

    
Um.....no. Not THAT Beethoven.

The real Beethoven
But Ludwig van Beethoven.  Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential of all composers.  He was born in 1770 and died in 1827.  So, yeah.....he's long dead.  But YOU get to learn one of his songs.

 Assignment
1)  Review everything
2)  Choose and practice 2 favourite songs
3)  Practice Ode to Joy HT 

** ACK!  I forgot to explain eighth notes.  But you guys tend to be smarter than the average bear so I'm sure you'll figure them out.  Most of the time the 8 year olds do.** 

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Calories

The Calories Storefront.


No.  This isn't a diet blog.  In fact, it might be the opposite of a diet blog.  Last night I went to a restaurant called Calories for a going away party for coworkers.  This was not hosted by the school director and was a "gathering" instead.  There are actually about 5 coworkers/teachers who are not returning for the 2012/13 school year but this party was really only for 2 of them.

  

Calories is located on the artsy-fartsy street of Broadway.  Yes, there is a Broadway here and it's not even New York.  Broadway is known for places like The Bulk Cheese Warehouse, the Broadway Theatre, The Better Good, The Mad Hatter and so on.  I managed to find a parking spot at the end of the block and around the corner. 

I arrived on time.  I was the second person there.

I had made the faulty assumption that this was for dessert since the meeting time was 7:30.  I had my face fixed for their famed cheesecake.  But upon finding out others had not eaten dinner yet I decided to order a plate called Fromage.  Fromage was a tray of three cheeses, seasonal fruit, and a baguette.  The baguette was so tough it could have been used to take someone's eye out.  But the tray itself was a fantastic work of art.  I wanted to take a picture of it and I should have......but I didn't.  Fail.I had a Saskatoon Berry Lemonade for a beverage.  The waiter said "ohmygod it's so good."  So I thought I had made a good choice.  Others were having wine because it was Wine Wednesday and 20% or something.  The lemonade was good.

We had a table to ourselves in the back of the restaurant.....there were about 12 of us.  It was HOT.  Now, I know that my hormones are playing tricks on me and sometimes I don't feel the temperatures accurately......but man, oh man, I needed a fan.  Not cool.

About half of our group left around 9pm and I really should have too, but I wanted that cheesecake, dammit!  I picked out the Oreo Cheesecake.  It took what felt like an hour to arrive at the table.  Not cool.  The cheesecake was good alright.  But was it the amazing-OMG-you-gotta-go-here type of cheesecake?  No.  I was expecting mind blowing orgasms of cheesecake.  Didn't happen.  Cannoli....seriously....cannoli would have blown it out of the water.
When I finally pulled away from the table and hugged my goodbyes it was 10:30pm.  I was so happy to be out on the street in the cool air.  The company had been fine but I was the oldest person there but by no means did I feel that old.  But the conversation wasn't even anything.....like.....interesting.....plus I couldn't hear everyone.  Ugh!  Once I was out on the street my immediate thought was "I'm too old for this crap!"  Also,  I just kept feeling like something was missing and several hours later....because the cheesecake kept me awake until 4am......what was missing was Hubby.  This experience would have been much better with Hubby and Hubby alone.  That's what made me feel most disappointed.

Today I found out one coworker who has been really great to me also isn't returning and I wasn't able to say goodbye to him last night as he didn't come to the farewell.  His classroom is next to mine and we've taught similarly as well.  I guess it's time for him to move on.  We can't all be fixtures....as I was reminded.....I am a fixture at the Academy.


 

Chapter Five [It's a Novel Idea]

I was so thankful to get home to my little apartment where it was safe. I sat in total silence to eat my Kraft Dinner, which I totally enjoyed. I even scrubbed the dishes and left them to dry in silence. When the silence became deafening I turned on a cd quietly and sat down on my couch. My foot touched something on the floor. I looked down to find my copy of Dusk still where I had left it. 
 
I picked it up and examined the cover art. I flipped it open to where I had left off. Some time later and a few chapters in, the phone rang startling me from the alternate reality I had escaped to.

Hello.” The smooth voice greeted. “It's Will, remember me?”

Will, yes!” I remembered. It's not everyday that strangers request my attention. Well, not every day for other people anyway. Normal people.

How are you?” He asked. I detected something different in his voice this time but I couldn't quite put my finger on what it was.

Okay.....I guess.”

Uh oh, that doesn't sound good. Maybe you want to tell me about it.” 
 
Wait. Wasn't I supposed to be the kind shoulder to lean on? The non biased ear to tell secrets too? “You don't seriously want to hear my problems.”

I”ll make you a deal.” Will rationalized. “I'll help with your troubles if you help me with mine.”

Deal.” If we had been in the same room we could have shook hands on it.

Silence.

Well, I can only help you if you tell me what it is!” Will laughed.

I laughed too. “I thought maybe you'd want to go first.”

It's only polite to let the lady go first.”

What a time to find a gentleman. I plunged on. “I went out for drinks with some people from work and I some how ended up agreeing to a date with one of them.” 
 
That sounds like it could be fun.”

Except that I didn't really want to.” I explained. “He has a bit of a reputation for romancing the girls.”

Ah.” Will paused for thought. “And you don't think you want to find out if the rumors are true?”

Exactly.”

Well, let's see.....how can I get you out of this jam.” I could hear the gentle thumping of fingertips on a table. “You could fake an illness.”

That would only be a temporary fix. He's pretty persistent.” I shifted the phone to the other ear.
Why don't you go out.....where did you say you were going?”

We're going to just do a casual coffee date.” I frowned at the word date.

Okay, so give me your cell phone number and I'll call you with an urgent message pretending to be your elderly aunt and then you can leave quickly.”

That would work.....only I don't have a cell phone.”

What?”

I don't have a cell phone. I figure that I'm only ever at home or at work. Besides I don't need the extra phone bills.”

I don't think I've ever known someone who didn't have a cell phone.” Will mused.

Well, I guess now you do!”

Hmmmm......I think your most feared situation will come true.”

What's that?”

You'll have to go out with him!” Will was laughing hysterically.

Great. Thanks for your help on that.”

Oh come on. Don't be upset.”

I pretended to be upset. “Why don't you tell me your problem?”

Will was suddenly very serious. “I met a girl who I would like to get to know better.”

Romance was in the air.

Well that sounds like a good thing. Tell me more.”

First of all I've only seen her a couple of times. AND I have no way of getting in contact with her. She seems perfectly intriguing.”

So let me get this straight. I have a date with someone I don't want to date.....and you have found someone to date only no way to date her!”

That seems to be the case.”

I was in hysterics by this point. My laughter was contagious. Will was laughing too. “What a pair we are!”

It does seem hopeless.”

You never know Will. Your mystery girl might just wander into your life when you least expect it.”

One can hope.” There was a buzzing noise in the background. “Oh.....that must be the delivery man. I ordered pizza before I called. I guess I better go answer that.”

Can't keep the pizza man waiting.”

Until next time Ann.” And then he was gone and I was left just listening to the dial tone.